Newspapers are backing away from claims that border patrol agents have “whipped” or hit illegal immigrants on the U.S.-Mexico border, although some are still using words that do not appear to be supported by evidence.
The White House press briefing room extensively reconsidered these false claims, where a reporter told White House Press Secretary Jane Saki that agents were using “looks like whips” on Haitian citizens.
Other top officials in the administration, including Psaki and President Joe Biden, condemned the agents for trying to stop illegal immigrants.
But pictures and videos of the scene show no whips being used.
The initial claim was The El Paso Times, a local outlet where there are journalists at the border.
“The agent waved his whip terribly, charging his horse at the men of the river who were trying to return to a camp under the International Bridge in Del Rio after buying food and water in Ciudad Aquana, Mexico.” Read the outlet.
That language has changed.
It now says, “The agent shook his reins terribly like a whip.”
An “explanation” says the outlet’s reporting team didn’t actually see “an actual whip.”
But the damage had already been done. PBS reporter Yamiche Alcinder shared the story with more than 1.2 million followers on Twitter and asked Saki about the situation in Washington.
“There are pictures and reports of border agents on horseback using Haitian immigrants as whips,” Alcinder said in a White House briefing room.
El Paso Times, its correspondent who wrote the piece and did not mention the Alessandar correction.
Other outlets also got the story wrong.
The New York Times has collected footage of Sawyer Hackett, executive director of the leftist People’s First Future Group. Hackett wrote on Twitter that agents were “arresting Haitian refugees with whips.”
A story in the New York Times hyperlinks to Hackett’s series of tweets, an action that signals journalists to verify claims and believe they are true.
A follow-up story from the paper claims that agents “used their horse reins to hit on moving immigrants.” That story is associated with the early story as the source of the claim.
Later the language was changed. It now says agents were “pushing immigrants back and shaking their reins.”
A correction says the article “overstates what is known about the behavior of some Border Patrol agents on horseback.”
The amendment states, “While agents waved their reins while sending the migrants back to Rio Grande, the Times did not see conclusive evidence that the migrants held the reins.”
The paper did not warn readers about the correction and the hyperlink to Hackett’s post still exists.
Twitter has not attached posts with any labels.
Axios, meanwhile, has twice falsely claimed that agents used whips on immigrants at the border.
News outlet Deleted After posting a tweet picture on September 20, it was claimed that agents showed immigrants “whipping”. No whip was seen in the picture.
The outlet deleted another tweet about a week later, on Saturday Accused Border patrol agents have been seen “whipping” immigrants.
But at least one Axios story still says agents are “whipping” immigrants. The story links to an NBC News Twitter post that doesn’t have that language. It was attached to an editor’s note stating that the piece was “modified to show that mounted agents were whipping immigrants – not using whips.”
Representatives from Axios, the New York Times and El Paso Times did not return requests for comment.
Fake news spread across the country. Psyche, Biden and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorcas said the photo and video footage was horrific and horse patrols in the Del Rio sector have been suspended for the time being.
Biden said last week that “people are being held there” despite being shown pictures or videos.
“It simply came to our notice then. I promise you people will pay, ”the Democrat added.
Miorkas launched an investigation and said the images of the border “do not reflect who we are.”
At least one photo and video showed agents swinging the reins, but no one showed the agents hitting any immigrants.
Psaki, alerted to the amendment on Monday, was asked if Walkback had made any changes to the administration.
“I don’t think anyone can look at those photos and think it’s appropriate action or behavior or something that should be taken within our administration. There is an investigation. It’s moving. We’ll let it play. But our reaction to the picture has not changed, ”he said.
The details of what happened are shocking.
Brandon Jude, head of the National Border Patrol Council, told The Epoch Times that agents did not use restraint to hit anyone. He said the Biden administration was perpetuating the “police bad” narrative.
“There are a lot of news outlets that have given birth to this controversy by rushing to justice for their misreporting. And I think if you talk across the country, and most of the people who take the left side of the central media, they still have the idea that border agents are whipping immigrants at the border, which we don’t know, “said Jeffrey McCall, of Depau University. The communications professor told The Epoch Times.
According to Adam Guillett, president of Media Accuracy in Media at Media Watchdog, some news outlets report that what they know is not true.
He points to the secret recordings of Project Veritas by New York Times staff and mentions previous situations where multiple outlets were forced to correct the initial story, such as a report by Covington Catholic students.
“They’re not trying to follow a large population with their readership, but they know that the only basis they’re going to get is anti-Trump, anti-republican progressives. So they’re going to write whatever story they can to that demographer,” Guillett said. The Epoch told the Times.
In the future, whenever preliminary reports present “alarming optics,” news agencies will have to wait and work to determine if the situation seems right, McCall recommends.
This News Originally From – The Epoch Times